Professor Camilla Andersen of the University of Western Australia has a sharp presentation on how contract law is broken (or limping along) — particularly in the age of microtransactions online, with a culture of TOS and consumer contracts which no one reads. She proposes ways to think outside the box, pointing to better ways for
In court management circles, it is established that Artificial Intelligence and Big Data are crucial to the evolution of court services. So why isn’t the #AIrevolution taking courts by storm? A few of the dynamics at play: a culture of “no” that resists change, an inertia towards anything tech courts that don’t have control of
Courts aren’t used to thinking about competition. Most have been used to be the only provider of dispute resolution. They haven’t had to think about the public as customers with choice. David Slayton, the court administrator of Texas scourts, presented on court disruption at the National Association for Court Management. If courts can “self-disrupt”, they
At the National Association for court Management, I attended the session on how courts are focused on better engaging minority and disadvantaged communities. There are many dynamics that feed into the poor relationship: Predatory Practices by municipal courts -with bail, fines, fees practices that take money from people in punishing ways Implicit Bias of police
A quick sketch of some of the takeaways from a presentation I gave, along with Karl Branting of MITRE corporation at the National Association for court Management. We spoke on AI and Big Data in the courts, and what the near future could look like with new tech integrated into court processes and services.
Another cartoon from today’s conference for court leaders, amalgamating a few speakers’ points from the lunch’s plenary. I am fascinated by combining the Back stage of court admins’ interests and perspectives, with the Front stage of litigants’ experiences and concerns. We can use more data-gathering about both these stakeholders’ experiences, to improve processes for both–
A drawn dispatch from this week’s National Association for Court Management– from the plenary on how we might use evaluative frameworks to improve how courts perform.
Last week’s New York Times Magazine features a beautiful quote and accompanying exploration of what it means to a person in a bureaucratic building. The original quote from Elif Batuman’s (terrific!) 2017 novel The Idiot observed how going through airport security is like death. You, the person, give your precious things up, and subject yourself
Last week, I spoke at Facebook’s Privacy@Scale one-day conference, on new directions of privacy design in the era of big data and ubiquitous tech. Here are my drawings from the day, with some of the speakers presenting their point of view and agenda. Some of the most interesting takeaways: How can consent in medical situations
Yesterday on NPR’s Sunday morning broadcast, I heard an interview with Alan Alda about his new book and ongoing work to make science comprehensible to normal people. His discussion was completely parallel to work to make the legal system comprehensible. Alda has identified the fundamental problem of communication between experts and lay people, that crosses
Yesterday I spoke at Facebook’s annual Privacy@Scale conference, all about how we can use data ethically and respecting people’s privacy and empowerment. The keynote was from Sandy Pentland, a professor at MIT’s Media Lab, who spoke about his Open Algorithms project — and the mandate he’s setting out for better use of big data for
At recent talks and conferences, I have been welcomed and challenged by people who are explicitly systems-thinkers. Some resist a design approach as too “micro” and lacking computational modeling-that would better predict outcomes rather than testing + experiments. Others see the links between participatory, multi-stakeholder design processes and a systems approach. I am thinking through
Today I am in sunny, lovely Vancouver, British Columbia at a symposium of the Canadian Administrative Tribunals’ adjudicators, advocates, and other professionals. It’s co-hosted by the Council of Canadian Administrative Tribunals and the British Columbia Council of Administrative Tribunals. The theme of the kickoff panel and keynote has been one of keen interest to me:
Earlier this week, I presented my Design for Justice work to a group at the Gruter Institute, with a mix of lawyers, biologists, computer scientists, economists, and more. It was a wonderful force for analogous thinking — because the questions I faced in response to the insights and design work were not the usual questions
During my recent Equal Justice Conference presentation alongside the Harvard Access to Justice Lab, I presented a quick practice visual I made, that would guide people through how they could “Serve Process” in Massachusetts for a guardianship case. These are my first drafts, laying out how I might compose and color a worksheet guide for
I am in Toronto today at Lawyering in the 21st Century day, at Ryerson University with their Legal Innovation Zone. Zev Eigen, Global Director of Data Analytics, presented a keynote on how law firms should be deploying data science in their work.
From this morning’s talk from Berkeley’s Robert A. Kagan on law in the time of disruption, at Stanford. He warns of the shift from the liberal order of the as half century, and the power that “the legal complex” has to stop it and uphold rule of law –particulate against regimes that present themselves as
I took notes at last week’s Equal Justice Conference presentation that I made with the Harvard A2J Lab crew, Erika Rickard, Jim Greiner, and Hallie Jay Pope. These notes capture the presentation that they made, explaining how they decided to take a visual approach to court outreach to litigants facing debt collection. They used visual
While watching CSPAN on Saturday morning (as you do), I came across a rerun of a hearing on airlines’ customer service. (Watch it yourself on C-SPAN’s website, it’s streaming for your convenience). Among the points of pressure that the Senators were putting on the various US airlines’ senior vice presidents at the hearing was one close
Alessandro Carrelli is a PhD researcher at Loughborough Design School, where he is investigating how to bring better user experience and higher quality consent for privacy transactions online. Why is it so hard to communicate to people what is happening with their data, and how can this be done better? He is running workshops and developing
Joshua Lennon lays out an argument for wariness of the coming rise of law chat bots. – they often are not jurisdiction based – they may give people false confidence in quality of the advice – they are too linear and don’t allow people to go back and see how the conditions or answers change
Andrey Zinoviev and Artem Goldman have built a Facebook bot — VisaBot — to help people figure out their eligibility for different immigration paths and then complete forms, letters, and other application matters.
Stanford law student Kevin Xu and his team has made a bot, Hilbert, to help people understand and navigate their health insurance plans. They are focusing on young breastfeeding cancer survivors as a pilot group. They used design thinking to get to a more empathetic and thoughtful experience. Tweet at @askhilbert
Radical– a historian at a Futurist panel! Prof. Norman Spaulding explains the populist roots of legal tools, to drive greater public access to what the law is. Before software, the technology was paper-based, gathering info, details, structures — making it more discoverable and, udeally, usable.
The problem with criminal law data is not that we don’t have it, but that what we have is not easily linked with each other. It is not currently usable to identify patterns, holistic views of the system, or relationships among agencies and people.
We see more discussion of predictive algorithms to judge people in criminal justice, to analyze whether / how to grant probation, bail, etc. But there are serious risks of False Positives, or racist/ biased algorithms. What standards will we use to evaluate proposals for use of these algorithms? And how do we build these tools
A panel on law, algorithms, ethics, and future tech. How do we build tools that understand when a person says, “I want a divorce,” they might be mad & not really want divorce- but counseling. Or, they might be truly in need of a divorce. How do we build smarter tools that don’t presume what
One of my academic articles has just been published in the Virginia Journal of Law and Technology. It’s called “The User Experience of the Internet as a Legal Help Service.” The article presents findings from my research into how people experience the Internet when they try to use it to solve legal problems. As more
One of the main points of resistance for lawyers in the design process is getting from talk to action. It’s too easy to start off with best intentions, but then get stuck in discussions, mapping, and brainstorming — without moving to making. This is a real challenge if your interest (like mine) is not just teaching design,
I love teaching. It is such a joy to bring students together to work on real-world challenges, and to do so in a sense of public service along with ambition to use our freedom at the university to tackle problems in more radical, unusual ways. The Stanford d.school teaching leaders have quarterly events to help
This afternoon I was privileged to attend the final presentations in the new Stanford class Ending Poverty with Technology. This class is taught by Sociology professor David Grusky, in conjunction with the Stanford Center on Poverty & Inequality, of which he is a co-director. I came to hear and review these presentations because one of the
The Office of Management and Budget released its proposed budget this week, in which they propose the elimination of the Legal Services Corporation. The LSC is the closest thing we have in the U.S. of a public fund to support legal help for people in dire need — whether it’s to protect against domestic violence,
One of my Brazilian students in my Prototyping Access to Justice class alerted me to a very cool app in Brazil, all about empowering people about their legal rights. It’s called Carteirada do Bem. It’s a native app (on Android) and (on ioS) + a website. It is put out by the assembly of Rio
The OpenGov Foundation has a project called Open Legal Documents. They have several projects about making government more open, transparent, and people-friendly. One way they do this is to post a Github of legal docs for others to use as templates for their own work. Rather than having legal docs as precious things to keep
What are better ways to help people follow a legal process? To get all the tasks, forms, consults, and decisions made to get to resolution? One mode I’ve been experimenting with in my Prototyping Access to Justice class is the photo storyboard. Using Google Sheets (or Powerpoint), I lay out a series of photos I’ve
I have just released the first working version of my book, Law By Design. It is meant for people in the legal system, to understand how design process, mindsets, and patterns can help them solve the big challenges they are facing. I have compiled my notes, insights, and work into these chapters to lay out
For the Hack the JD event this past weekend at Santa Barbara’s College of Law, I was asked to prep a 5 minute elevator pitch of what I saw as the future of law education. I made this image to sum it up — at least for a certain type of law student, who was
This past weekend, I spent two very gloriously sunny days in Santa Barbara’s College of Law, in windowless rooms, planning what a better way to educate future lawyers might look like. The event was hosted by Santa Barbara College of Law, which is a small, ‘opportunity’ school that has a small class of night students,
I was delighted to receive a gorgeous copy of an illustrated guide to the topics on the New York Bar Exam: The New York Bar Picture Book, by Wela Quan. It’s a subject-by-subject tour of New York law, all laid out in illustrated outlines with cartoons, sketches, and comic touches. The book is a great